Man charged in bomb threat at Trump Tower

Associated Press

LAFAYETTE, La. — A Louisiana man has been charged with phoning in a bomb threat to a restaurant at the Trump Tower building in New York City last year.

A federal grand jury in Louisiana handed up an indictment last Thursday charging 27-year-old Paul Miller, of Lafayette, with making the bomb threat last September.

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The indictment says Miller called Trump Café at President Donald Trump’s namesake skyscraper in Manhattan and told the person who answered that a bomb was in the building. It doesn’t say where he called from.

A spokesman for U.S. Attorney David Joseph’s office said he doesn’t know if Miller has an attorney.

Miller is scheduled to make his initial court appearance on July 24 in Lafayette.

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Source:: The Mercury News – Politics


Facebook fundraiser hits $2 million to ‘Reunite immigrant parent with their child’

A Silicon Valley couple, horrified at the images of immigrant children being separated from their parents, are marshaling their vast connections in the tech community and beyond to send $2 million (and counting) to a legal defense fund at the Texas border.

Charlotte and Dave Willner, some of Facebook’s earliest employees who are now at Pinterest and AirBnB, started a Facebook fundraising campaign to “Reunite an immigrant parent with their child” Saturday morning with a goal of $1,500, enough to post bond for one parent who crossed the border illegally.

In true Silicon Valley style, however, the post went viral and by Monday afternoon more than $2 million had been raised — making it one of the most successful campaigns on the relatively new Facebook Fundraisers.

The campaign comes amid an international outcry — from Democrats and Republicans, politicians and religious leaders — over the Trump administration’s new “zero tolerance” policy of separating children from their parents when they cross illegally or show up at the border to ask for political asylum. Children are being housed in a former Walmart in Texas, among other shelters, while their parents are detained for prosecution or asylum hearings. The government separated about 2,000 children from their parents in the six-week period through the end of May, the Trump Administration announced Friday.

The Willners were moved by the viral photo Getty Images photographer John Moore shot of the young girl in a red shirt crying at the feet of her mother and border patrol agents. The couple are both in their 30s and have a 2-year-old daughter of their own.

“These aren’t kids we don’t have to care about. They’re like our kids,” Charlotte Willner said in a phone interview from her San Francisco office Monday. “When we look at the faces of these children, we …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Politics


Letter: Chances slim for Sheriff Smith win in November

Chances slim for Sheriff
Smith win in November

Sheriff Laurie Smith is whistling past the graveyard to think that making a runoff is a victory.

At 43 percent, she lost 17 percent of her support compared to 2014. John Hirokawa looks to be in a position to pick up most of the votes cast for the other three candidates. Jose Salcido entered the race too late to gain traction, and the other two ran low-profile campaigns. It is safe to assume many of the votes cast for them were “anybody but Laurie Smith” votes.

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As an incumbent with so much money and political support, Smith should have won outright. That she did not, does not bode well for her chances in November.

Ted Atlas

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Source:: The Mercury News – Politics


Trudy Rubin: The nauseating flattery Trump lavished on this mass murderer

By Trudy Rubin
Philadelphia Inquirer

“We have developed a very special bond,” President Donald Trump said of Kim Jong Un at the end of the Singapore summit.

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The effusive compliments Trump showered on Kim were endless: “He’s got a great personality. He’s a funny guy, a tough guy, he’s very smart, he’s a great negotiator. He loves his people.

“He trusts me and I trust him.”

And thus was born the latest Trump bromance with a foreign strongman he wooed at a summit. First there was Xi Jinping, now Kim, next, probably Vladimir Putin.

In Singapore, summitry made sense if it was meant to halt the rhetorical war between Trump and Kim and to advance the dismantling of North Korea’s nuclear program. But the nauseating flattery Trump lavished on this mass murderer did little to promote those interests. Instead, it displayed how Trump’s eager embrace of dictators plays into their hands.

“A personal relationship can lead to progress in formal negotiations, but it is a means to an end, not an end in itself,” says the Heritage Foundation’s Bruce Klingner, a former senior intelligence analyst on Korea. Yet Trump’s fervent embrace of Kim became the leitmotif of the summit; the president seemed convinced that it would persuade the despot to “denuclearize.”

How else to explain Trump’s repeated efforts to slough off one of the worst human-rights records on the planet. Kim’s father starved to death over a million people, while Kim executes opponents and maintains gulags containing 120,000 political prisoners. When asked by Fox News about Kim’s human-rights record, Trump answered dismissively: “A lot of people (elsewhere) have done bad things.”

Asked if he had a message for the North Korean people, Trump told …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Politics


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